Buckingham Palace: A Royal Garden

Claire Masset, with Mark Lane. Royal Collection Trust (Univ. of Chicago, $19.95 trade paper (120p) ISBN 978-1-909741-69-0
Masset (Cottage Gardens) and Lane, the head gardener of Buckingham Palace, offer a stunningly beautiful look at the “green lung” of the London palace. The garden, they write, comprises 16 hectares: “as well as displaying the finest horticulture, it harbors an astonishing diversity of plants and wildlife, which are in themselves an ecological treasure.” The authors take readers on seasonal tours that trumpet the glories offered all year: the summer garden is lorded over by two symbolic plane trees planted by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, and has a herbaceous border rising “like a colourful wave” as well as a rose garden boasting 60 bushes in each of the 25 beds. Spring features a “crescendo” of azaleas and rhododendrons, and the garden’s bees produce about 160 jars of honey a year while coots nest on the lake. In autumn, the arboretum becomes a “mesmerizing centrepiece,” and in winter, “denuded” trees turn attention to the garden’s sculptural aspects, such as the lamp posts topped by gilded coronets. Vivid photographs embellish the text, and a timeline of the garden’s history offers intriguing tidbits. Anglophiles and armchair gardeners alike are in for a treat. (June)
Reviewed on : 04/15/2021
Release date: 06/01/2021
Genre: Lifestyle
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